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bear by san

March 2017



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bear by san

Misheard Ballads:

I still persist in hearing that line in "Thomas the Rhymer" as "That is the road to Inverness, though some call it the road to Hell."

Too much Pogues.


That being my favorite ballad, I could never mishear it. I love that poem
::grins:: that'd be the A9...
Y'know, the Pogues might just agree with you on that.
The road to Hell bit, not too much Pogues. One can never have too much of the Pogues.
Is that actually "That is the road that leads to Hell/Though some call it the road to Heaven" -- or does the Steeleye span version have a line different from the versions I've read?

How do you like my men-at-arms
And how do you like my sheep?
And how do you like little Matty Grove
Lies in your arms asleep?
The actual line is "That is the road to wickedness--" though I confess to liking Inverness better.
Ah, that's be the version of the ballad collected from the Kipper family:
A holiday, a holiday, and all the people dozed
Lord Ormsby's wife went into the town, but everything was closed
Hey, I saw the Kippers do that. Quel hoot!


My turn to be envious: I never caught them in performance.
Oh, that's beautiful.
Now, I've never been there, but I can't imagine Inverness is *that* bad.

There's a Steeleye Span song, "Peace on the Border," that contains the line, "They are gone now / the killing and disorder..." I persisted for the longest time in hearing and even singing this, without realizing my mistake (unlike you) as, "They are gone now / the king and his daughter..." My sweetie at the time was having hysterics when she heard me at the idea of the terrible fierce princess they were so relieved to see the back of.

I'm famous for mishearing things. My favorite was - do you remember that Prince song, back when he was Prince without complications, 'Rasberry Beret'? I didn't care about the song, one way or the other, but the first time I heard it on the radio I could have sworn it was "Rasberry Toupe'".

And you know, honestly, I think it would have been better that way.
I thought it was 'Raspberry meringue'. Making the song even kinkier than it is?
Classic mondegreen!
One of the best of those is Dave Sim's mishearing of the Fleetwood Mac classic "The Chain," the chorus of which he apparently thought for years was "Never pray for change."

I kind of like his version better.
Hello! I found your journal through sartorias's link to your fabulous Marlowe discussion - do you mind if I add you to my friends list?

I don't know what it is about ballads that makes them so good for this sort of thing - 'mondegreen', from 'The Bonny Earl of Moray', now seems to be a standard term in Linguistics.
Come on in! And be welcome. I should warn you that I'm having a more entertaining week than usual, because I'm revising rather than writing. *g* Often, this journal trails off into a long mumble of writing statistics and whinging about how books are too hard for weeks at a time.
The jolly old Duke of York
had ten thousand men
He marched them all the way up the hill
and had them all again

Thanks to Half Man, Half Biscuit, I'm unable to hear the song any other way now.

(And Half Man, Half Biscuit can take the Pogues any day.)

*g* I also get "Scalp them and Scot them" out of Silly Wizard's "Donald McGillavry," which amuses me no end... of course, it's Scottish, so picking out actual lyrics is a bit of a trick....

I actually got to see Steeleye Span sing that song live! What a thrill. :)